Should I Buy The iPhone 4S, Galaxy S II, or Nexus Prime?

Update: As I write this I read Wed. evening that Steve Jobs has passed away. Tragic to lose such a visionary, genius, and hero at such a young age. RIP, Mr. Jobs. I think this decides it, I’ll get the iPhone.

I’ve never had a smart phone before and getting ready to buy one. I’ve been done with my Sprint contract since July and ready to buy. But what to get? Android or iPhone?

Many of us were hoping Tuesday to see a revamped iPhone, an iPhone ’5′ with a slightly larger screen. Instead we got the iPhone ’4S’ for which I sarcastically say the ‘S’ stands for “diSappointment.”  ;-)

[here's a way to upgrade on the cheap]

The other two premier phones at the moment are the Samsung Galaxy S II and the soon to be released Nexus Prime. Samsung has already jumped on the opportunity and released a spec comparison sheet.

[What I wrote about Jobs when he left Apple in August]

I’ll leave a ton of topical links below. In short, the two Android top-tier phones have similar hardware but larger screens. Though the iPhone still has a better resolution than either. The iPhone 4S camera is 8mp now and appears to be much improved over even the good 4 camera. The new iPhone 4S has Siri, and a new dual-core processor along with improved graphics. And the bottom line? Do you prefer the closed, controlled, symbiotic iOS? Or the more open but not as polished Android OS? Oh, and iCloud seems promising.

I was able to play with a coworker’s Samsung Galaxy S II today and it’s quite impressive. But I think that first thing Friday morning I’ll be ordering a new iPhone 4S.

So what’s your take?

iPhone 4S, The Basics:
Everything You Need to Know About Apple’s New iPhone 4S
New Apple iPhone 4S: All the Information
Apple Unveils iPhone 4S – WSJ.com
Told ya so: iPhone 4s is not revolutionary, but didn’t need to be
iPhone 4S: I Am Disappoint
Apple Announces iPhone 4S, no iPhone 5

Siri:
Everything You Need to Know About Siri Personal Assistant for Apple’s iPhone 4S
With Siri Interface, Apple’s New iPhone Changes Mobile As We Know It

iOS 5:
iOS 5: The Top 10 New Features

The New Camera:
The iPhone 4S Camera Upgrade Explained
Here’s What Makes The iPhone 4S New Camera So Much Better

Reviews:
iPhone 4S First Take – CNET Reviews
Hands on: iPhone 4S review

Additional links:
iPhone 4S vs. the smartphone elite: Galaxy S II, Bionic and Titan
Battle of the iPhones: iPhone 4S vs. 4 vs. 3GS
How the iPhone 4S Stacks Up With the Best of the Rest
Meet The iPhone 4S–It’s What’s Inside That Counts
Why Apple Still Loves Its Media Player Business
iPhone 4S: High resolution photos taken with its 8MP camera

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  • Saki_02

    Get the Samsung Galaxy S II, better specs, larger screen, 4G, open OS, and freedom. Apple done shot themselves in the foot with this 4S.

    • Frankrizzo

      iPhone 4s sold more in pre orders than the Galaxy S II will sell in for the life of the phone, hows that shooting themselves in the foot?

  • cavsarge11

    I switched from the iPhone3G to Moto Atrix 4G.  I love it and it is fast.  It took a day or two to get a hang of Android after two years on iOS.  However, I find the Siri on the 4S VERY intriguing.  I hope that Android can make something similar.  Siri seems like the closest thing to having an actual live Personal Assistant- you can make appointments, text, etc. completely Hands-Free!

    • http://pretenseofknowledge.com/ speedmaster

      Thanks! Siri does look slick.

  • http://occamsrazr.com Ike Pigott

    Honestly, you’re missing it entirely.

    Get one of the new Windows Phones, with the 7.5 Mango running on it.

    You can get a model on any of the major carriers, and it is outstanding.

    If you’ve never had a smartphone before, even better.

    Seriously, Chris — go to a store and demand to see one. I say Demand, because the sales staff there are so programmed to push Android and iPhone they will actively try to steer you away. WP7 is whip-fast because the code is optimized — my Focus with an 1GhZ processor runs laps around Androids with 1.5GHz.

    (I can also send text messages with voice alone — WITHOUT having to call up an separate app.)

    • http://pretenseofknowledge.com/ speedmaster

      Hmmmm. I’ll take a look, thanks!  :-)

  • Bradley Haase

    I’m currently in the same struggle myself between the iPhone 4S and the Prime. 

    I had the SGSII for a week and returned it. I had a bunch of tiny complaints with it but I think I ultimately returned it because it was just a little too wide and just a little too slippery for my taste. I could see myself dropping it very easily and when you buy a phone that slim, you really don’t want to ruin the slim nature by slapping a case on it. There were also a few annoying software bugs that I felt needed to be worked out and I wasn’t patient enough with it. 

    The iPhone 4S seems like a great phone. Yes, the screen could be larger and that’s probably the biggest issue. I really like all the focus they put on the camera, that’s important to me. It’s nice to see a company that doesn’t just make it about megapixels. 

    The reports today are still saying the Prime will be VZW only, being that I’m on Sprint, that will make up my mind for me. 

    I second the idea of looking at Windows Phone 7 as well. After seeing Microsoft leave their mobile platform languishing in the land of the stylus for so long, it’s interesting to see them enter the market so strongly. While they don’t get a ton of attention, I think they will now that Mango is out and they’re beginning to compete feature to feature. 

    Whatever you do, don’t buy anything until after the October 11th announcement from Samsung/Google. The newly released specs from GSM Arena make the Prime sound like a monster. If it comes to Sprint and not just VZW, I’ll be crazy enough to pay cash for it off contract. 

    • Anonymous

      Although I went with the iPhone (because it dominates the market now and I’ve delved into the whole open-source stuff back when the Nokia N900 was hot); I’m a bigger supporter of Android OS and Google. I much rather have a nexus become the top mobile device. Android is much more open to its developers and doesn’t restrict users from certain stuff iOS does. iOS wants to control everything you do, which is a joke , but a sound business model (Steve Jobs hated everyone, especially his competition).

      Google also understands the whole, purchase a phone without a contract for full price model that Europeans are so used to.
      p.s. GSMArena is a great site!

      I decided to get this iPhone quick without waiting for any announcements from the opposition, simply because even if I do not want the iPhone later, i will undoubtedly be able to sell it and procure any other phone I want since iPhone is a popular brand phone and the hype lasts for a while.

  • http://pretenseofknowledge.com/ speedmaster

    Great info, guys. Thanks. While I’m really interested in the Nexus Prime, some of the rumors say it will have a 4.65-inch display, which seems just too big. I want a phone, not a tablet.  ;-)

  • Mario Wilk

    Hello sir,

    I’ve been carrying around a T-Mobile blackberry curve 8330 for a looong time. I’ve always dreamed of a T-Mobile Iphone with GSM /SimCard. The only thing close was the AT&T microSim Iphone 4. But that resulted in hacking to ‘hack’ at your sim card with a x-acto knife to turn it into a microSim, cutting away at part of the intergrated circuit… (bad idea, and replacement sims cost $15 USD from T-mobile)

    Anywho, I’ve been waiting since March of this year after hearing the speculation of the new Iphone 5/4S and that it would probably come out on T-Mobile. Once I watched the keynote and it was announced only Sprint would be getting the Iphone apart from Verizon and AT&T, I sat back brainstormed. In the end I ended up pre-ordering a Black 64 GB Iphone 4s from AT&T, with their 400 minute(39.99) + unlimited text(19.99) w/ protection pack (6.99) and 200mb data plan ($15). 

    I am going from a 55 dollar monthly bill at T-Mobile to 84.99 as long as I keep the protection pack (atleast 1 year b/c i might get this thing stolen or lost # +I can gps locate it = cool) on AT&T without having to worry about cancellation due to no contract on T-Mobile and porting my existing cell number takes care of cancellation (Thank you AT&T for dealing with T-Mobile for me).

    So, MAIN POINT:
    I got the Iphone because
    1. I was waiting for an Iphone on T-Mobile
    2. It features a slim design for my pocket
    3. already have an iTouch+phone , want to minimize
    4. superior camera, hybrid IR filter for realistic colors, led flash, 8MP
    5. HD Video shooting w/ editing & stabilizer AND FACE DETECTION! 
    6. dual bands just incase of switching to verizon (which has the best network in USA but im a fan of GSM over CDMA networks)
    7. siri appeals to me
    8. the crazy amount of apps and free shit if jailbroken
    9. the quality of the onboard apps (tested rigorously)
    10. I wanted GPS in a phone
    11. T-Mobile openly stated that it wants to focus on ‘android’. (no hope for T-Mobile Iphone #1)
    12. AT&T looks like it’ll need Obama’s permission at this rate to merge with T-Mobile, so many lawyers and lobbyists are against the merger.  (no hope for T-Mobile Iphone #2)

    I’ll let you know what I think about it after I get it, but I’m guessing it’s too late now and you’ve already made up your mind.

    • http://pretenseofknowledge.com/ speedmaster

      That’s a good list, Mario!  ;-)

      Can’t wait for my phone to arrive.

      • http://www.lifesunexpected.com Mario Wolfe

        Me either, thanks for liking my Pelikan Jr blog post a while back.

  • http://occamsrazr.com Ike Pigott

    Should have gone with the Windows Phone…